Road Trip Gear — Want We’ll Take With Us To Car-Camp In Luxury

Living out of a van will be tricky, even with us planning to visit nearly everybody we know.  Between visits, we’ll be car-camping and exploring less-populous locales searching for travel nirvana.  Fun favors the prepared, and here is what’s going to keep us fed, warm, and comfortable.

camping involves more than just Fat Tire beer

© Lisa McNamara

Coleman Stove

We’ve made a lot of good meals over the campfire and on the backpacking stove, but neither are great daily cooking solutions.  The classic green Coleman stove will be a luxury — two burners with plenty of space and a nice low design.  It’ll be almost as spacious as our current Chicago kitchen.  I don’t like the newer models as much — there’s something reassuring about the boxy, briefcase design.  The classic model is still made in the US too.

A “Real” Table

Squatting over a campfire is fun, but a table makes things a lot easier — both for prep and for eating.  A big, clean table will make a huge difference — and it will double as our desk.

Crazy Creek Chairs

We’ll have a bed inside the van, which means there won’t be much room for chairs and relaxing.  These chairs from Crazy Creek will allow us to relax inside the van when it’s rainy or cold.


When we’re not in a WiFi hotspot, blogging will become difficult.  Luckily Virgin Mobile has broadband plans that are affordable and flexible ($10, 100MB, 10 days and $40, unlimited, 30 days).  This wireless USB Adapter or this MiFi router will keep us connected.

Cold Storage

As much as I want this classic metal Coleman cooler, it’s not going to work for our trip.  We need something electric, and this model from Koolatron has the best reviews.  Not sure on the size yet, but a 12V, DC-powered cooler will keep beverages cool and vegetables fresh.

More to come as we get closer to departure.  Let us know if you have any tips or ideas in the comments.